NostraDavis’ Boston Bruins player to watch vs Coyotes: Riley Nash

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 25: Riley Nash
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 25: Riley Nash /

Welcome to the segment called ‘Player to Watch’ with NostraDavis. With 4-time Selke winner, Patrice Bergeron, out again, the Boston Bruins will once again turn to unproven scorer, Riley Nash, to man the middle on the top line against the winless Arizona Coyotes.

Savor the moment Riley Nash fans. For the second consecutive game, Riley Nash looks to be slotted into the first line center role. Nash, despite recording an assist during the game, widely looked to be outmatched playing against Colorado’s best players. Then again, all of the Boston Bruins were seemingly outmatched last game.

Boston Bruins
OTTAWA, ON – APRIL 15: Riley Nash /

The Situation

The prototypical 3rd or 4th line center certainly hasn’t produced at an exceptional level throughout his career. He’s topped 10 goals and 25 points once entering his sixth full season in the league. This is not to say that the former first round pick is not important to the Bruins success this season, but he may not be ready to take on such a large task. Nash has filled in for the injured Patrice Bergeron who is yet to make his season debut.

Nash has found a fit as a checker, penalty killer while providing occasional for the B’s. This would mean that being thrust into a position where he relied upon for offense is a little foreign to the 28 year old Albertan. Nash would find himself between the elite duo of Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak against the ‘Yotes who know a thing or two about generating offense.

Some Bruins fans pondered as to why Ryan Spooner didn’t fill this role, as he is known to display more skill than Nash. But, Bruce Cassidy has decided on the more experienced, arguably more two-way player in Nash.

Arizona Coyotes
GLENDALE, AZ – FEBRUARY 18: Anthony Duclair /

The team that Nash and Co. will be lining up against tomorrow is the Arizona Coyotes. As the only winless team in the Western Conference, the ‘Yotes should pose an easier matchup for Nash. Arizona’s lineup boasts some potential, but little in terms of depth which bodes well for Nash. The likes of Max Domi, Anthony Duclair, and Clayton Keller may be very formidable soon, but not yet. Nash wasn’t able to keep up with Colorado’s youngsters, we will see if the same happens tonight.

Next: Bruins early morning ice 10/14/17

Looking Forward

Regardless of Nash’s performance tonight, all of Bruins Nation hopes for a speedy recovery from Patrice Bergeron. However, this may be Nash’s last chance to prove to the NHL that he can be relied on for offense, or at the very least keep up with the NHL’s top players. It is for these reasons that Riley Nash is tonight’s “Player to Watch.”